Congress isnt the only institution with new leadership in the new year.
Several healthcare companiesfrom a 13-hospital Catholic health system to a rural, small Mississippi hospitalannounced changes at the top in December. The industrys incoming class includes a handful of newly appointed chief executive officers or presidents.
If results of a survey of CEOs top concerns are any indication, newly named executives face significant financial and operational challenges (See story, above.) Heres a look at some of the appointments announced in December:
Stephanie McCutcheons career in Catholic healthcare continues. The former president and CEO of St. Louis-based SSM Health Care and one-time chief operating officer of Bon Secours Health System, based in Marriottsville, Md., became the first lay person to lead Hospital Sisters Health System in early December. McCutcheon, who held the job on an interim basis since September, succeeded Sister Jomary Trstensky as president and CEO of the 13-hospital system.
McCutcheon said the Springfield, Ill.-based system, which operates in Illinois and Wisconsin, is gearing up for changes this year. Executives traveled to meet with private-practice physicians in late 2006 and will consider various strategies for working more closely with doctors in the early months of 2007, she said. Officials began working on the launch of a leadership and workforce development institute, in part to cultivate lay leaders for the Catholic system. The system will also expand its systemwide efforts to boost healthcare access and increase its lobbying efforts through national associations to increase financing for low-income or uninsured patients care, she said.
Hospital Sisters board also agreed to spend up to $300 million on capital improvements and authorized executives to explore rating the systems credit. Hospital Sisters finished fiscal 2006, which ended June 30, with net income of $31.1 million on revenue of $1.4 billion. McCutcheon emphasized that Hospital Sisters has not yet decided to enter the bond market, and will consider the systems options as part of a broader review of its financial assets. We want to be deliberate about the use of resources and clear about the payback, McCutcheon said. However, system officials have held preliminary meetings with ratings agencies.
McCutcheon, formerly a senior adviser for the San Francisco-based Health Technology Center, isnt the only interim executive to end up named to the job. Mercy Suburban Hospital, based in East Norriton, Pa., named Lisa Mallon to succeed Mark Barabas as CEO of the 141-bed hospital. Barabas resigned to pursue opportunities closer to his family, a spokeswoman said. Mallon served as interim CEO for six months.
Tri-Lakes Medical Centers incoming CEO is a healthcare veteran, but a new face for the 93-bed hospital in Batesville, Miss. Barry Morrison, who has worked for both the University of Mississippi Medical Center in Jackson and Birmingham, Ala.-based HealthSouth Corp., will take the helm of Tri-Lakes Jan. 2 as CEO. Morrison succeeds Ray Shoemaker, who held the job for about 13 months before resigning earlier this month, a hospital spokeswoman said. Shoemaker was credited with helping orchestrate a financial turnaround at Tri-Lakes and was named a Modern Healthcare Up & Comer in 2006 (Sept. 18, 2006, p. 22).
Health Management Associates, Naples, Fla., has promoted Brian Gwyn to CEO of 70-bed Franklin Regional Medical Center, Louisburg, N.C. Gwyn, 34, has worked for investor-owned HMA at three other hospitals in Georgia, Florida and North Carolina. He joined HMA as a hospital executive in 1999 after earning a Master of Business Administration degree from Gardner-Webb University.
Tom OConnor, president of 61-bed
St. Francis Regional Medical Center in Shakopee, Minn., will make the jump in March to president of 266-bed Mercy Hospital, Coon Rapids, Minn., announced Allina Hospitals & Clinics in late December. OConnors switch comes as 11-hospital Allina, based in Minneapolis, wraps up a systemwide conversion to electronic medical records. Its kind of like going from high school to college, OConnor said.